THE Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said Monday that it is monitoring Mayon Volcano’s continued inactivity which could lead to a possible lowering of the alert level.
“If the trend continues to go down, we may stand down to Alert Level 3 even after a week, but standing down from Alert Level 3 to 2 may take a few more weeks,” said Mariton Bornas, chief of Phivolcs’ Monitoring and Eruption Prediction Division.
Alert Level 4 remains in effect over Mayon which means that hazardous eruption is still possible within days.
As of Monday, however, Mayon’s activity was only characterized by “general quiescence” or a stable behavior, gravity-driven lava flow, and emission of gas from the summit crater.
The volcano has only been emitting steam-laden plumes or a low volume of volcanic gas over the past week according to Phivolcs.
Volcanic earthquakes have also reduced from 127 to 44 in the past 24 hours as recorded by Mayon’s seismic monitoring network.
Bornas added that any eruptive activity over Mayon is still possible over the amount of sulfur dioxide emission that was measured at an average of 1,403 tons per day, equivalent to the weight of a large tree.
Phivolcs continues to advise the public to refrain from entering the eight-kilometer radius danger zone.
Citing information from the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council, a total of 23,703 families or 90,739 persons in 61 barangay (villages) are still prohibited from entering the danger zone as of Monday.